Sat, Oct. 29, 2011 - [Women's Cross Country]
Loras 3rd of 9
The Loras College women's cross country team ran to a third place finish at the 2011 IIAC Championships on Saturday at Luther College on the heels of a pair of All-Iowa Conference finishes by senior Genna Kinley and sophomore Mary Rector.
With near perfect conditions in Decorah, Iowa the Duhawks placed their top five runners among the first 26 to reach the finish line – scoring 78 team points to claim third place.
Leading the Duhawks on Saturday was senior Genna Kinley who finished in seventh place, setting an individual lifetime P.R. with her 23:01.
"I felt it went out a little slow, but we started to spread out between (miles) two and three," Kinley said after the race.
"The last mile turned out to be tough, but I had Mary (Rector) right there and I wanted to give it all I had."
Regarding the team result, Kinley was satisfied with the third place finish.
"We knew it was going to be tough, we're always trying to pass those orange jerseys and of course the Luther ones, too. And all the girls had their best races of the year, so it was good."
Shortly after Kinley reached the finish line in seventh, sophomore Mary Rector came home in eighth in 23:12, another P.R. for the Duhawks.
Katie Flogel was just strides out of the All-IIAC top 15 in 16thplace with a solid 23:38. Rounding out the Loras scoring was Katie Hemesath in 23:52 and Kellie Wagner in 24:11.
The total split time for Loras' 1-5 runners was 1:10, helping them to defeat the Cornell College Rams by 23 spots. Wartburg won the meet with a team score of 28, the host Norse were second with a 45.
"I was really happy with how our girls executed our race plan," head coach Bob Schultz said.
"Cornell was ranked ahead of us all year, and so if we were going to get third, that was the team we were going to have to beat, and we were able to do that," he noted.
The NCAA Division III Regional Championships for the Central Region are in Waverly, Iowa on November 12.
"The girls want to get in the top eight at regionals, and we're closing the gap with a few teams ahead of us recently. We are in one of the top regions in the country, so we're excited to go see how we measure up at this point in the year."
Kinley and the Loras women's team joined members of the Duhawks' men's team in congratulating Schultz on his 2011 Men's Iowa Conference Cross Country Coach of the Year award.
"I just felt really proud of him (after they announced his name)," Kinley said. "He really earned it. He is one of the best coaches I've ever had."